Aretha Franklin’s Adele Cover Rolls “Deep” on ‘Letterman’

Marc Hogan

By Marc Hogan

Lead News Writer
on 09.30.14 in News

Leave it Aretha Franklin to demonstrate, once again, how paying someone respect enriches everybody involved. “It’s been a long time since an artist like Adele has come along,” the Queen of Soul told Rolling Stone a couple of years ago, comparing the British singer favorably to Carole King. Franklin extends the compliment on her upcoming, André 3000-assisted album, Aretha Franklin Sings the Great Diva Classics, covering Adele’s 21 smash “Rolling in the Deep” with a segue into a rendition of Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell hit “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.”

The studio version is already plenty combustible, but when Franklin and her large-scale backing group took to the Late Show with David Letterman stage last night, the “fire” of the song’s opening lines became a blaze. Through her phrasing and presence, the music legend once again found a way to imbue a deeply expressive song with another level of resonance and passion. By the time she took the microphone from its stand and belted from the lip of the stage, it wasn’t hard to believe she could move mountains. Franklin told RS, “I love to hear a schoolgirl on the schoolbus yellin’, ‘We coulda had it all!’” After she performs again on Today this Friday, odds are that will be an option.

Aretha Franklin, Aretha Franklin Sings the Great Diva Classics (October 21; RCA)

1. “At Last” (Etta James Cover)
2. “Rolling in the Deep (The Aretha Version)” (Adele Cover)
3. “Midnight Train to Georgia” (Gladys Knight Cover)
4. “I Will Survive (The Aretha Version)
” (Gloria Gaynor/Destiny’s Child Mash-Up)
5. “People” (Barbra Streisand Cover)
6. “No One” (Alicia Keys Cover)
7. “I’m Every Woman”/”Respect” (Whitney Houston/Aretha Franklin Mash-Up)
8. “Teach Me Tonight” (Dinah Washington Cover)
9. “You Keep Me Hangin’ On”
 (The Supremes Cover)
10. “Nothing Compares 2 U
” (Sinéad O’Connor Cover)